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From Corey Tisdale <>
Subject Re: Faceted Hierarchal Navigation
Date Mon, 16 Jul 2007 19:39:38 GMT
I'm certainly not smart enough to look under the hood of SOLR, but from 
the one basic installation I've been messing with, it seems like the 
faceting is for non-hierarchical data only. I could be wrong, though. In 
my mind categories and facets are similar but distinct, like the 
category dictates the type of facets. What if sex, purpose, and 
waterproofness were facets and shoes were the category? Then you could 
have SOLR pull the Male/Femal for sex, Hiking/Running/Etc for type, and 
Yes/No for waterproof and build your nvaigation that way?


Matthew Runo wrote:
> We were thinking of using SOLR simply because we'll end up navigating 
> around the products via facets at some level - so why not just use it 
> from the beginning.
> For example, if we build the category landing pages from our DB, when 
> the user clicks on a link, they'll get dumped into SOLR to view the 
> products.. why not get the list of available categories to generate 
> the landing page as well? Either way, we have to store the departments 
> in the index, right?
> Am I trying to make SOLR do something it's not designed to do? Please 
> tell me if I am =p
> +--------------------------------------------------------+
>  | Matthew Runo
>  | Zappos Development
>  |
>  | 702-943-7833
> +--------------------------------------------------------+
> On Jul 16, 2007, at 12:13 PM, Corey Tisdale wrote:
>> So you want your category display to be controlled by SOLR? Why not 
>> keep the hierarchical structure of categories in a RDBMS, then keep 
>> the product index in SOLR?
>> Corey
>> On Jul 16, 2007, at 1:56 PM, Matthew Runo wrote:
>>> Hello!
>>> I was very surprised to find that this wasn't in the email archive 
>>> for this list.... I'm wondering about the best way to provide 
>>> hierarchal navigation using facets. For example, lets assume that I 
>>> have products with department trees like:
>>> Footwear > Mens > Hiking > Waterproof  (could be arbitrarily deep 
>>> though..)
>>> Now, I need to make a "Mens Footwear" landing page. So ok, I'll 
>>> facet on "department", for a search of "mens+footwear" present in 
>>> "department".
>>> Oops.. now I'm showing lots and lots and lots of departments, 
>>> because I don't know which ones are "higher level" than others. 
>>> Since each department has many departments under it, a full list 
>>> would be so long that people wouldn't use it. Information overload.
>>> Ok, so I'll break up the "department" field, and put it into 
>>> "top_level_department" and "mid_level_department" and the rest of 
>>> the items just in "department". The landing page will facet 
>>> "top_level_department", and upon rendering the page I'll query SOLR 
>>> to get all the "mid_level_department" facets for that 
>>> top_level_department. Then, if the user clicks on one of these, 
>>> we'll facet on "department" to get the rest of them (and the 
>>> products) with the other two levels as filter queries.
>>> That would work (right?), but it seems horribly wasteful to run all 
>>> those extra queries to get the sub-department facets. Surely there 
>>> is a better way here.. just waiting to be brought to light.
>>> How have you implemented hierarchal navigation via SOLR?
>>> +--------------------------------------------------------+
>>>  | Matthew Runo
>>>  | Zappos Development
>>>  |
>>>  | 702-943-7833
>>> +--------------------------------------------------------+

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